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What's happening with PI Batch? - A FAQ for our PI Batch Customers - Vol. 2

Question asked by dcasazza on Dec 28, 2016

This is the second post of Frequently Asked Questions for PI Batch from our Batch Customers.  Please feel free to ask additional questions or provide product feedback as comments to this post.  Our first FAQ post can be found here.

 

Handling Migration

Q: What if I were to avoid migrating my PI Batch data to Event Frames? Are there any downsides to just starting up my interfaces to write Event Frames?

 

A: We have designed our migration process to minimize differences between PI Batch and Event Frames. This recommended process enables allows you to use historical batch context to do analysis with Event Frame tools, even though the history was captured in the PI Batch Database. Newer batch context will be captured with Event Frames. In short, avoiding the migration would mean that historical batch information would not be accessible.

Additional downsides to avoiding migration are the technical and possibly regulatory risks (in certain industries) with running batch interfaces in parallel, with one interface instance writing PI Batch and another interface writing Event Frames. In this situation, it may be very difficult to figure out the “official record” if there are any differences between the two data sets.

For these reasons, we very strongly urge you to test migration when the time is right for you. If you have additional questions about your specific situation, please feel free to contact us for specific advice through Technical Support, Field Services, or Product Management.

 

Q: Ok, you convinced me about running a migration. But batch context is a critical function for my business so I want to minimize interruption risk during Batch to Event Frames migration. What’s the best migration strategy?

 

A: We recommend engaging OSIsoft to develop a migration strategy if this is your situation. We have field service engineers who can lead workshops to support your migration needs. Please contact your account manager for details about workshops to support PI Batch to Event Frames Migration.

We also recommend setting up a clone of your production system to test the migration process, as well as confirming all interface, visualization and other data access programs work as expected with Event Frames before migrating your production system.

 

Evaluation

Q: How do the products that I used with PI Batch compare to what I would use for Event Frames?

 

A:  The following table shows how PI Batch products line up with Event Frames comparable products:

 

PI BatchEvent Frames
PI Datalink with PI Batchview Add-inPI Datalink 2016 with Event Frame Explore and Compare
PI Processbook with PI BatchviewPI Coresight
Batch interfaces for BES/MESBatch Interfaces Version 4.0 or greater required for Batch to Event Frames Migration
PI Batch Generator (PIBagen)Event Frames Generator (EFgen)
PISDK PI Batch programmatic access

AFSDK, PI OLEDB Enterprise, PI OLEDB, and PI Web API provide event frame programmatic access

 

Q: I need Gantt Charts and ability to view my batches in Event Frames, what do I do?

 

A: We have included this functionality in PI Coresight 2016 R2 and we will plan to add enhancements to support reference batch (pinned batch) in the PI Coresight 2017 release. We invite customers to set up a test system to get familiar with Event Frame visualization technology. PI Coresight 2016 R2 includes Gantt charting and overlay trending; you can evaluate this product to see how the functionality will work for your site or enterprise. You can see a presentation on this functionality from our latest User Conference here.

 

Q: I need RtReports to support Event Frames before I can migrate. What is the OSIsoft roadmap?

 

A: We are planning to deliver RtReports 4.0 to support customers’ migration to Event Frames without requiring any changes to the report data template, targeted for Q3 2017.

For customers that want to implement specific reports that access AF elements directly, we expect RtReports 4.1 to enable this reporting, targeted for Q1 2018. Please refer to the RtReports product roadmap for additional information and updates.

 

Q: I have customizations, such as PI Processbook VBA code that accesses PI Batch data programmatically, what do I do?

 

A: OSIsoft is in the process of reviewing and determining approaches to migrate customers with customization. Please contact David Casazza (dcasazza@osisoft.com) so that we can review your situation and be aware of your use case for our planning.

 

Q: Will PI Processbook or PI Batchview support Event Frames?

 

A: No. At this point in time, we have chosen to leverage the modern web browser technology of PI Coresight to deliver Event Frames functionality. We do not currently plan to support Event Frames in PI Processbook nor PI Batchview.

 

Q: How do I get Event Frames?

 

A: Event Frames functionality is available with a standard PI Server license.

 

And lastly-

 

Q: Whom should I contact with questions?

 

A: Tech Support and your account manager are of course excellent sources of information. For additional consultation or to provide product feedback, our product managers are very interested in ensuring that you are successful.

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